While Alzheimer’s is indiscriminate, recent studies have found that Alzheimer affects women more than men:
- 60% of all Alzheimer’s caregivers are women. At the age of 65, women have a 1 in 5 chance of developing Alzheimer’s. Compared to a 1 in 11 chance for men.
- 5 million people living with Alzheimer’s in the U.S., 3.2 million are women.
- Research has found that women in their 60s are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s than to develop breast cancer.
This is reported by researchers who published an article in the journal JAMA Neurology. But, why is Alzheimer affects women more than men?
Age Isn’t Everything
The most damning factor in Alzheimer’s development is your age – as you get older, your risk of developing it increases. Since women are estimated to live longer than men, scientists think this could be one simple reason why they are more likely to contract the disease. Especially since men die more often of heart conditions in their 50s and 60s.
But regardless of life span, some factors may put women at a greater risk then men. The disease is understood to be an abnormal part of aging. And with Alzheimer’s, overall physical and mental health may have an influence.
So, scientists have studied women’s and men’s physical and mental health to pin down potential risk factors. Women are more likely to develop depression, which can lead to an increased risk of dementia. This information is according to several studies, including one from 2017 that looked at participants’ brain health over 28 years.
According to a new study from The US National Center for Health Statistics. The study found that women are twice more likely to experience depression than men.
“Women are more likely to have a biological basis for depression than men, with more volatile neurochemistry”. According to psychotherapist Deborah Serani, award-winning book Depression in Later Life. “Monthly fluctuations in hormones, as well as decreases and increases in hormone levels before pregnancy and after as well as before and during menopausal changes, may cause depression.”
Thyroid gland disorders
Based on the Thyroid Association, women are five and eight times more likely to suffer from thyroid issues than men. In addition, every eighth woman is likely to have thyroid gland issues in her entire life.
Hypothyroidism, where thyroid glands do not produce enough hormones that regulate metabolism, is the most frequent thyroid issue. “If have hypothyroidism, there is a 90% chance that the cause is Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. This is an autoimmune disorder,” says biophysicist Sarah Ballantayi”.
Symptoms of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis include weight gain, headaches, depression, fatigue, cold hands and feet, constipation, dry skin, hair loss or thinning hair, joint stiffness, muscle pain, memory problems or ‘blurred consciousness’ and heavy or irregular menstrual periods in women. ” Fortunately, we can diagnose it with a simple blood test and can be we can easily treat it with medications.
Low-frequency hearing loss
More recently, a famous American weekly news magazine reported that a woman named Chen suddenly developed an unusual condition in China. One day she stopped hearing male voices. At the hospital where the victim went, Dr Lin Xiaoqing diagnosed her with inverse hearing loss.
The specialist determined that Chen hears her, a female voice, perfectly but does not distinguish the speech of a male physician at all. This is a sporadic type of low-frequency hearing loss that follows short-term tinnitus.
The patient told the doctor that she had ringing in her ears the night before and then vomited. After that, Chen stopped hearing what her husband, who had a shallow voice, said to her. Dr Xiaoqing claims that tinnitus, that is, tinnitus, is not a disease, but a symptom, caused by various reasons, in particular a side effect of a genetically determined characteristic of her patient. As a result, the stress of working late triggered Chen’s low-frequency hearing loss, and only rest and the proper treatment will now restore him.
The basis of sex differences between men and women is due to sex chromosomal differences – the genotype for men is XY and XX for women. This creates profound morphological and physiological differences between men and women.
One of the most significant risk factors for Alzheimer’s is vascular and metabolic diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes. While coronary artery disease is more common in men, small blood vessel disease is responsible for more heart disease in women. In addition, complications of diabetes are more common in women than in men and are associated with depression and coronary heart disease.
Thus, men and women with high blood pressure and cholesterol levels may have an equal risk of developing vascular disease. Still, women may be more susceptible to complications, resulting in the earlier or more severe onset of Alzheimer’s disease than men.